The Cosgrove Law Firm LLC


To get an ID you need a birth certificate to get an ID...

I was recently asked to help a young man obtain his birth certificate.  My First thought was that he should just go online or in person to the Cook County Clerk’s Office.  It turns out that this young man had lost both of his parents and was homeless.  In order to obtain a birth certificate for yourself, you must present some form of identification.  This young man had none.  Well go get one.  Get a State I.D.  Not so fast.  To get a State I.D., you need other forms of identification, including a birth certificate.  The young man was caught in a classic “Catch-22”.  To get a birth certificate, you need an I.D.  To get an I.D., you need a birth certificate.


            This appears to be a common scenario so the Clerk’s Office has a solution.  An attorney can go into the office and sign an affidavit attesting that the person requesting the birth certificate has no other means of identification and has adequately identified him or herself to the attorney.  The Clerk will then issue the birth certificate.  In this case, the young man was able to go back to his high school and get a copy of his birth certificate and student I.D.  This was satisfactory and I went in to the Clerk’s office with him and we got the birth certificate. 


File this under #morethanonewaytoskinacat

Audrey Cosgrove